Mocial Chief set ‘to fly’ at Callaghan Park Tuesday.
Published 9 January 2023
“He’s not a budgerigar or a pet as after all he is a racehorse” is as about as true a statement that trainer Kerrod Smyth has ever made.
The Rockhampton trainer was in his own inimitable style referencing his wife Glenda’s horse Mocial Chief which is engaged in the Open Handicap (1300m) at Callaghan Park on Tuesday afternoon.
Mocial Chief, the equine equivalent to the Smyths of an ATM (automatic teller machine) is burdened with a good horse’s weight of 63Kg but then again, he is indeed a good horse.
Coming off the back of three successive wins, the most recent at Callaghan Park under 60.5kg on December 29, Mocial Chief has flown much higher than any budgerigar could do.
In 22 starts for the Smyths since arriving from the Gold Coast in the autumn of 2021 as a mere Maiden winner, Mocial Chief has won 11 times and always been in the first four from 22 outings.
No wonder trainer Kerrod and owner Glenda are feeling chirpy as Mocial Chief has winged $150,000 for them which I’m sure you’ll agree is a quite a nest egg.
Enough of the frivolity and play on words, so let’s get serious about what to expect from Mocial Chief just after he flies (sorry -there I go again) from the barriers around 4.45pm.
Actually, in keeping with the ethos of “the best laid plans of mice and men oft go astray”, trainer Smyth never originally planned to be starting Mocial Chief in the Rocky Open (1300m).
“After he won the Magic Millions Country Cup Qualifier last start here, I was led to believe he had earned a start in the $500,000 final at the Gold Coast next Saturday. However, after contacting Magic Millions it was determined he was ineligible on two clauses. With that in mind and the fact he had done so well after the December 29 win here, we decided to run again this Tuesday”, Kerrod Smyth explained.
Then he detailed the reasoning for the decision.
“Look remember he (Mocial Chief) is the 1300 metres Callaghan Park track record holder so that’s on his side. Also because of the way the programming falls there isn’t really another suitable race coming up for him in the near future. I normally don’t back-up horses in 12 days during the summer months preferring two weeks and more. However, that’s the way it is and he can go for a good rest after Tuesday’s run and of course he is a fit and well racehorse – not a pet”, Smyth said.
Apart from second topweight and worthy rival, Darryl Hansen’s Sunshine Coaster Bombasay (61.5kg), Mocial Chief has to concede his other rivals at least 9kg each in the handicaps.
Just like the horse himself, his rider Ashley Butler is flying, perched in sixth possie on the Queensland jockeys’ table this season with 45 winners.
Butler 30, has ridden 21 winners in the last 10 weeks starting 2023 at Mackay last Friday with a winning double.
The in-form hoop won the inaugural The Archer on Emerald Kingdom last year and on Tuesday chases “three on-the-trot” on Mocial Chief.
On a small five race card brought about by the deletion of the Class 6 Plate and 2YO Handicap at acceptance deadline, racing commences at 2.20pm.